Arts & CulturePress Release

Gintong Aklat Awards 2023 honors excellence in Philippine bookmaking and publishing

MANILA, PHILIPPINES — The 20th Gintong Aklat Awards brought forth exciting changes to acknowledge the diverse literature and the remarkable contributions of the Book Development Association of the Philippines’ (BDAP) members.

Established in 1981 and held every two years, the primary objective of the Gintong Aklat Awards is to recognize and encourage the production of quality books that excel in all aspects of bookmaking. This includes acknowledging outstanding established and new publishers who have made significant contributions to the industry. The specific areas for recognition encompass book production (printing, binding, etc.), book content (writing and editing), and book design.

An addition to the categories was the Graphic Literature category, which includes comics, graphic novels, and other illustrated forms of storytelling. Special recognition was also given to outstanding publishers in the five categories – Best Publisher in the Arts and Humanities, Best Academic and Scholarly Publisher, Best Literary Publisher, Best Independent Publisher, and Best General Interest Publisher.

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Furthermore, this year’s Gintong Aklat Awards included a special award for the best book design among all the short-listed entries. This year, the Gintong Aklat Awards recognized the best books published in 2020 and 2021 with 15 winners and 27 finalists.

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Here is the list of winners:

  • Poetry (English):
    • Milflores Publishing, Inc. and Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities
      for Harvest Moon: Poems and Stories from the Edge of the Climate Crisis by Padmapani Perez, Rehanna Rossouw, Alexandra Walter, Renato Redentor Constantino (Editors)
  • Fiction (English):
    • Ateneo de Manila University Press for My Sad Republic: A Novel (Twentieth Anniversary Edition) by Eric Gamalinda
  • Creative Nonfiction (English):
    • Milflores Publishing Inc. for Rizal in Saga: A Life for Student Fans by Nick Joaquin, Introduction by Ambeth Ocampo
  • Poetry (Filipino):
    • Isang Balangay Media Productions for Atra by Mesandel Virtusio Arguelles
  • Fiction (Filipino):
    • Ateneo de Manila University Press for Aswanglaut by Allan N. Derain
  • Creative Nonfiction (Filipino):
    • UST Publishing House for #Pasahero: Mga Nakikisakay na Sanaysay by Joselito D. delos Reyes
  • Arts and Humanities:
    • Ateneo de Manila University Press for Endangered Splendor: Manila’s Architectural Heritage 1571-1960 (Volume 1: The Center) Hardbound by Erik Akpedonu and Fernando N. Zialcita
  • Food:
    • Anvil Publishing Inc. for Notes From My Kitchen 2 by Reggie Aspiras
  • Inspiration:
    • OMF Literature, Inc. for This Season of Grief by Various Contributors, Joanna Nicolas-Na (Editor)
    • San Anselmo Publications, Inc. for Companions! XJ Narratives by Gemino H. Abad, L.F. Habito, and Prof. Ed Garcia (Editors)
  • Science and Technology:
    • Ateneo de Manila University Press for The Zanjeras of Ilocos: Cooperative Irrigation Societies of the Philippines by Jose A. Rivera
    • Far Eastern University for A Guide to Gingers of Sorsogon by Rudolph Valentino A. Docot
  • Natural and Applied Sciences:
    • Ateneo de Manila University Press for Drugs and Philippine Society by Gideon Lasco
  • Social Sciences:
    • Vibal Group, Inc. for Pugot: Head Taking, Ritual Cannibalism, and Human Sacrifice in the Philippines by Narciso C. Tan
  • Graphic Literature:
    • Summit Media (Summit Publishing Co., Inc.) for Salamangka 2 by Ian Sta. Maria

Best in Book Design:

  • Ateneo de Manila University Press, Some Are Smarter Than Others: The History of Marcos’ Crony Capitalism, Cover Art and Design Alfred Marasigan, Book Design by Paolo Tiausas
  • Center for Art, New Ventures & Sustainable Development (CANVAS) I am the Change in Climate Change, Book and Cover Design by Liza Flores and Cover Photo by Ruben Flores
  • Isang Balangay Media Productions Atra, Cover Design by Oliver Ortega and Ruzzel Valdepena, Book Design and Layout Design by Ruzzel Valdepena
  • Isang Balangay Media Productions Pesoa, Book Cover Design by Mesandel Virtusio Arguelles and Book Layout by Ronald Verzo II
  • Milflores Publishing Inc. and Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities Harvest Moon: Poems and Stories from the Edge of the Climate Crisis, Book Design by Felix Mago Miguel Jr.
  • Vibal Group, Inc. for Pugot: Head Taking, Ritual Cannibalism, and Human Sacrifice in the Philippines, Book Design by Francisco dC Mendoza and Cover Design by Ryan T. dela Cruz

Best Publishers of the Year 2020-2021

  • Best Publisher in the Arts and Humanities – Ateneo de Manila University Press
  • Best Academic and Scholarly Publisher – Ateneo de Manila University Press
  • Best Literary Publisher – Ateneo de Manila University Press
  • Best Independent Publisher – Milflores Publishing, Inc.
  • Best General Interest Publisher – Anvil Publishing Inc.

The BDAP has been successful in raising awareness of the importance of books and reading in the country. It has also helped to improve the quality of books published in the Philippines.

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